I have been rambling about the plus size fashion “industry” in SA for quite some time now (mainly on Twitter). I have also been doing some research, speaking to designers and chatting to some other plus size ladies so I am going to be blogging about all the things on my mind regarding this topic. (Warning this is a lengthy post)
I feel very strongly about this because not only am I larger than average but statistically speaking we are one of the countries that always make it on the list of obese countries.
There is a lack of variety, especially when it comes to trends and good fit. Who says that plus size women don’t want to/shouldn’t be fashionable?
A lot of the problem lies with retailers because do they know what we want? Do they realise the gap in the market? Do they need to get a plus size lady who knows fashion involved? So I am going to list all of the major SA retailers stores that stock plus size clothing that I know of to help any ladies who are on the search for more options. And perhaps even attract the retailers that could use some “pointers” from those who actually wear the clothes because I sometimes feel like buyers/designers don’t necessarily know what we want.
Being one of my favourite stores because of affordability and trends, the Mr P Curve range often disappoints me. While they do sometimes adapt certain items from their moderate ranges, I feel that their curve range is made with an older woman in mind (not that there is anything wrong with that but it is Mr P) . The jeans are usually winners. A plus size girl ranging from between a size 40 and 42 can often get away with wearing the moderate range (Oakridge) in a XXL. The Oakridge high waisted skirts are a must-have because they fit so nicely and because they sit at the smallest part of the waist a plus size gal can easily get into them. I especially wish, because of their involvement with bloggers/social media/limited edition ranges/campaigns that they would get some plus size bloggers and do a campaign.
Part of the Mr P group, Milady’s has quite a wide variety of plus size clothing and I am often pleasantly surprised with what they have on offer. Their moderate ranges are also bigger in spec so a plus size lady can definitely wear some of the moderate items. People associate Milady’s with “old fashioned” clothes and very rarely will you spot teenagers in there unless with their moms but I think it is worth a visit. Basic and fashion tees are often a good buy from Milady’s. I have a striped tee from Milady’s which is my absolute fave.
Edgars has a plus size brand called Penny C which is very disappointing considering the amazing brands this retailer stocks. Mostly outdated and more formal/workwear. The only thing I have ever bought from Penny C was a pair of black skinny jeans which stretched so badly every time I wore them so quality wasn’t great for price.
You will only find a good variety of Donatella (the plus size range) in bigger Jet’s. Jet keeps up with trends to a certain extent with the Donatella range and often have some really good garments on offer. Their jeans are a big no no for me because they don’t really stock skinny jeans and something about the fit is never right. A good spot for denim shirts, jerseys, fashion tops and sometimes dresses. Moderate range does go through to a size 40 which is also a good thing.
Because I haven’t been into Woolworths for ages I am not sure what they have been stocking so I can’t really speak for the variety and trends available at this retailer.
This isn’t a very major retailer but it is an option. I personally never visit this shop because it is out of my budget and I don’t find very much on offer appealing.
Updated: PnP Clothing
I forgot about this store but I actually love their clothes and most of their garments go up to size XXXL. Thanks Jane for reminding me 🙂
There are of course some online shops that stock plus size clothing such as Spree, Zando, City Chic, Captive8 but I personally have never bought from any of them so I cannot give a proper opinion on the actual quality or fit but will do a blog post soon listing them all and what I think about what they have on offer.
This list may seem long and some might think “what is she moaning about” but all of the ranges I mentioned are pretty small with little variety and hardly any updated trends.
Many can point fingers and say just lose weight if you want to be fashionable or want more variety but that is not the point, the point is that retailers should embrace the bodies in our diverse and “large” country and cater for all.
Have I missed any shops? Where do you shop? What are your thoughts on the topic?